Accessibility View Close toolbar

12540 Broadwell Road, Suite 2102

Milton, GA 30004 US


Open mobile navigation


The 5 Most Common CrossFit Injuries We See and Treat

Many CrossFit athletes, even those who do not compete at the level of the CrossFit Games, will eventually experience an injury due to some aspect of their training. The fact remains that not everyone can have 100% perfect form 100% of the time. There is no such thing as a perfect athlete.

In March 2012 Jerred Moon, founder of End of Three Fitness, posted an article for his website titled, “Is CrossFit Injury Ridden?” To begin with, he drew attention to three well-known CrossFit Games athletes (Mikko Salo, Sam Briggs and Graham Holmberg) and pointed out that all three were battling knee injuries. Two of the athletes had injuries severe enough to keep them out of the 2012 CrossFit Games. While there is example after example of athletic injuries in the sport, you don’t have to be a victim!

In general, there seem to be five main areas that CrossFit athletes have a tendency to injure: lower back, knees, wrists, shoulders and elbows. The Doctors at Milton Chiropractic & Massage treat lots of CrossFit athletes suffering from these types of injuries.

1) Lower Back

An injury to the lower back should come as no surprise to most CrossFit athletes. When you are lifting such heavy weights again and again, all it takes is one lift with bad form and weak abdominal muscles to feel the sharp jab of pain. Whether it’s from a strain, herniated disc, your sciatica flaring up or a myriad of other reasons, lower back pain should not be ignored.

Athlete or not, some Chiropractors place the numbers as high as 80% when talking of adults with back problems. If you consider what the lower back supports, it should come as no surprise why it is so injury prone. It supports everything from the spine to the top of your head, which is why keeping your core muscles control and correct movement patterns is so important. The lower back already has enough to support without adding any unnecessary body weight into the mix.

2) Knees

The knee is one of the largest joints in our bodies. Because of this, we are highly dependent on its functionality. All it takes is a knee injury to reinforce this dependence! Our knees are made up of bones, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, muscles, joints, arteries, veins…the list goes on and on. It is able to support up to 8 times our body weight. Even if you are a small person that’s a lot of pressure on such a small part of your body!

If the knee is so important, then why does it seem so easy to injure? First, we must understand that you can’t isolate the knee. It’s intricately connected to the pelvis, hip, upper and lower legs, ankles and feet. It’s literally a powerhouse that provides support for the entire body. Many times knee injuries are simply manifestations of other areas of weakness that fail to support the knee.

3) Wrists

The wrist is an area of the body that is often overlooked by most athletes. In the age of technology, however, taking care of the wrist could not be more important. Mobility and strength of the wrist is important whether you are lifting a Clean and Jerk or typing an email at work. Too many people wrongly assume that the soreness that comes from typing, or swiping their tablet screens is simply par for the course.

The root causes of wrist injury are mobility and flexibility. If you type the phrase “anatomy of the wrist” into Google, you might be surprised at what you find. It’s an intricate web of tendons, ligaments and bones, working at incredible levels of flexibility to provide daily function. For CrossFit athletes, lifting too much too soon (this includes body weight) can injure a wrist that is not flexible and strong enough to take the weight.


The final two areas, the shoulder and elbow, seem to make up the majority of CrossFit injuries. It’s interesting that both are joints and both are essential to gaining full range of motion in the Olympic lifts that create the framework for CrossFit training.


4) Shoulders

By far, shoulder injuries seem to be the most common injury for CrossFit athletes and thus it deserves a lot of time and attention to make sure that you understand what is going on when the shoulder moves.
As far as bones, the shoulder is made up of two: the humerus and the scapula (or shoulder blade). The shoulder joint is softly cushioned and stabilized with a thick bed of cartilage that protects the bones as they move around in a ball and socket joint. As the joint itself is rather shallow and weak, it must be properly cared for.

The shoulder blade is home to four smaller muscles that fuse together and make what is referred to as the rotator cuff. If you were to look at the rotator cuff you would see a neat little coming together of the bones, muscles and tendons to provide support and strength for your shoulder. A good, healthy shoulder is one that has a high degree of strength as well as a full range of motion. Some people have strong shoulder muscles. Others have great flexibility. The ideal is to pair the two.

It’s not uncommon to see athletes walking through the gym, rotating one shoulder and vigorously massaging the muscles with the other hand. It often starts as a weakness or a tweak that creeps up when doing overhead lifts or an extended amount of pull-ups that the weakness and fatigue will appear. Shoulder injuries should NOT be taken lightly. There is too much at stake to let the injuries go untreated. Get help at Milton Chiropractic & Massage!

5) Elbows

Of all the most common CrossFit injuries, perhaps the one that might surprise someone is an elbow injury. For most CrossFit athletes, elbow pains appear when you are in the front rack position, preparing for a lift such as front squats, power cleans or full cleans. Most often, elbow damage can from improper positioning of the bar as well as over tension.

Elbow injuries can be tricky because, while it may be easy to push through the pain in other areas, the elbow is strategically placed to make lifting almost impossible without full range of (painless) motion. Considering there are over twenty muscles that make up the elbow joint, it is a small joint that provides the pathway for skilled, precise movement.

For many athletes, elbow pain is associated with the term “tennis below” and simply comes from overusing the muscles in the elbow. Straining the muscles around the elbow (think biceps and triceps) can also cause an injury to the elbow. Straining any of these muscles can lead to an extended period of discomfort in your elbow. It’s best to sit out the injury and give your body time to heal.

With all of this risk of injury, it might seem that CrossFit has a greater tendency for harm than other forms of exercise or sport. Perhaps this is true with any sport. Runners are at a higher risk for shin splints. Baseball players will undoubtedly experience tennis elbow. Has anyone ever met an avid basketball player that didn’t sprain his or her ankle? Even bowling fanatics will likely develop tendonitis.
While all of these injuries can be prevented, there is no 100% foolproof training plan that guarantees health and safety. Like any extreme sport, caution and common sense go a long way, especially in CrossFit!

The Chiropractors at Milton Chiropractic & Massage focus on resolving a variety of acute and chronic spine-related conditions that are common among CrossFitters.  We focus not only on pain relief, but also address the underlying causes such as muscular imbalances, biomechanical deficiencies, improper lifting techniques, and improper conditioning.  If you are looking to recover from a specific injury or are just looking to achieve optimal health and performance, come in and see us at Milton Chiropractic & Massage located in the downtown Crabapple/Milton area.




Let us HELP!!

We take care of many little ones at our office!!!

If your little one is SUFFERING FROM:


Ear Infections


and so much more

Call us....we can help!!!

Call : 770-751-9224

Email: [email protected]


Office Hours

Our Regular Schedule

Milton Office


9:00 am-12:00 pm

2:15 pm-6:00 pm


9:00 am-12:00 pm

2:15 pm-6:00 pm


By Appt

2:15 pm-6:00 pm


9:00 am-12:00 pm

2:15 pm-6:00 pm


9:00 am - 12:00 pm









Find us on the map


Reviews By Our Satisfied Patients

  • "I was very impressed with the chiropractic care I received from Dr. Anderson. I had received chiropractic in the past for my neck pain, but not to this level of care. After only a few sessions, my symptoms began to disappear, especially my neck pain, and I know I would not have been able to perform to my everyday work functions without the treatment I received."
    Neck Pain
  • "I have benefitted tremendously from the chiropractic care I received from Dr. Anderson. Not only has the adjustments helped alleviate my stiffness and aches, but it has helped me have more energy and just feel more balanced over all. A few months ago, I was able to resume a favorite hobby of mine: golf. Due to my previous pain, I never thought that’d be possible."
    Back Pain
  • "Dr. Anderson has allowed me to be headache free for quite some time now. I used to have daily nagging headaches that often would turn into a migraine leaving me unable to function. For the longest time, I thought I could just keep taking medication to have the pain subside."
  • "As a court reporter, using my hands to type on a daily basis is a requirement. The work is speedy and can often last for hours at a time. Several months ago, every movement I made became excruciatingly painful. I started seeing Dr. Anderson and he put together a program for me that helped right away. He stressed the importance of my posture and proper hand and arm placement."
    Carpal Tunnel
  • "It's been 7 months since I got wiped out by a monster wave. I sought treatment at the hospital and they took x-rays and said everything seemed normal, that I would just have some pain for a few days. A few days actually turned into several weeks, so at the suggestion of my girlfriend, I went to see Dr. Anderson."
    Sports Injury

Featured Articles

Read about interesting topics

  • Left-Handers Day

    Left-Handers Day Left-Handers Day, celebrated on August 15th, was launched in 1992 by the Left-Handers Club, an organization based in the United Kingdom. Since then, Left-Handers Day has become a worldwide event and social media phenomenon. Around the world, approximately one in ten persons is left-handed. ...

    Read More
  • Peak Experiences

    Peak Experiences The American philosopher and naturalist Henry David Thoreau roamed far and wide over the hills and mountains of his native Massachusetts and neighboring New Hampshire. In his masterwork, "Walden," Thoreau famously stated that we must "reawaken and keep ourselves awake, not by mechanical ...

    Read More
  • Dynamic Warm-ups

    In a common occurrence, you bend over to pick up the pencil you inadvertently dropped on the floor. Or you bend over to pick up the soap bar that has slipped through your fingers in the shower. Or you bend over to lift a bag of groceries out of your automobile trunk. These are all daily events. But on ...

    Read More
  • Summer Sports

    Summer Sports In the summertime, everyone's thoughts turn to the outdoors. We want to get out in the sun and have some fun. Some people do exercise outdoors, such as running, walking, and biking, all year long regardless of the weather.1 For others, summer's warmer temperatures make activity outside ...

    Read More
  • Wellness Gardens

    Wellness Gardens When time is spent in an office or indoors day in and day out, some can lose that connection to the outside world. And that loss of connection can lead to higher stress levels and more health ailments without even realizing it. But when that the gap between office life and outdoor life ...

    Read More
  • Smart Shoulders

    Our shoulder joints have the greatest range of motion of any of the musculoskeletal joints in our bodies. The shoulder joint is really two joints, the glenohumeral joint between the arm bone (humerus) and the shoulder blade (scapula) and the acromioclavicular joint between the acromion (a bony projection off the scapula) and the collarbone (clavicle). The glenohumeral joint is a ball-and-socket joint and the acromioclavicular joint is a gliding joint. ...

    Read More
  • A Book and Its Cover

    A book cover may not necessarily tell the whole story and may not accurately portray the nature of the contents within. Publishing companies pay high salaries to their marketing staff to create cover copy that will entice prospective buyers to make a purchase. But many times the book itself does not ...

    Read More
  • When Your Spine Is In Line

    Good spinal alignment means good biomechanical health. Essentially, your spine is the biomechanical center of your body. Your legs are connected to your spine via two large and strong pelvic bones. Your arms are connected to your spine via your shoulder blades, ribs, and numerous strong muscles and ligaments. ...

    Read More
  • An Apple a Day . . .

    What is so good about an apple? Is it the color, ranging from ruby red to pale pink? Is it the crunch? The sweetness? Or is it, instead, a combination of all of these qualities, plus the natural goodness derived from the apple's secret ingredients — phytonutrients? If this were a multiple choice quiz, the answer would be "all of the above". Importantly, in addition to possessing numerous appealing physical qualities, apples contain an abundance of health-promoting biochemicals known as phytonutrients.1,2 These specific organic molecules are derived not only from apples but many other fresh fruits and vegetables, and help power the immune system, protect against cancer, maintain healthy eyes, and assist cells in clearing out metabolic waste products such as free radicals. ...

    Read More
  • Standing Tall

    Young peoples' bones stop growing by approximately age 20, somewhat earlier in women and somewhat later in men. Long bone growth, that is, in the arm, forearm, thigh, and leg, ceases later and smaller bone growth, that is, in the hands, feet, and spine, ceases earlier. In essence, you're as tall as you're ...

    Read More


Sign up for more articles